Pair of Seated Figures Playing Liubo, Earthenware with pigment, China

漢 彩繪陶六博俑
Pair of Seated Figures Playing Liubo

Han dynasty (206 B.C.–A.D. 220)
1st century B.C.–1st century A.D.
Earthenware with pigment
a: H. 13 13/16 in. (35.1 cm); b: H. 13 5/8 in. (34.6 cm)
Tomb Pottery
Credit Line:
Charlotte C. and John C. Weber Collection, Gift of Charlotte C. and John C. Weber, 1992

Accession Number:
1992.165.23a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 207
Both written records and archaeological finds attest to the popularity of the game of liubo (sometimes translated "six rods") during the Han dynasty. A board divided into roads, and twelve pieces (six for each players) and dice thrown to determine moves, constitute the basic equipment for the game. It is thought the pattern on the board has cosmological significance illustrative of earlier traditions of divinatory casting.
[ J. J. Lally & Co. , New York, 1987; sold to Weber]; Charlotte C. and John C. Weber , New York (1987–1992; on loan to MMA 1987–1992; donated to MMA)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Arts of Ancient China," 2005.